Whilst agreements often referred to as ‘Pre-nups’ have been common in the US and much of Europe for many years, they have been less so in England and Wales.
Most people are aware that agreements made prior to marriage setting out what happens to monies, and sometimes children, in the event of a separation are not legally binding. However, if carried out properly they can be heavily persuasive to a court
Agreements should be made with both parties being legally represented and should not be made more than three months or less than three weeks prior to a marriage ceremony. If you have been married before, it is possible to have a post-nuptial agreement drafted and these are on the increase.
This year, after much public debate, campaigning and high profile divorce cases in the media, the government has announced plans to introduce a ‘no-fault’ divorce process for couple who want to end their marriage on good terms.
Whilst plans are very much in early stages until its introduction, what are the options until then?
There is only one ground for divorce and that is that the marriage has irretrievably broken down. This must then be supported by one of five facts:
One party has committed adultery, making it intolerable for the other to live with them.
One party has behaved in such a way that it would be unreasonable to expect the other to live with them.
One party has deserted ...
With the no fault divorce still on hold and delays in parliament looking set to continue, many couples still in limbo wanting to formally separate, but not to get involved in messy acrimonious divorce proceedings.
There is another way, (and, really, it’s a better way)……..
Collaborative Law is a process in which a separating couple each appoint a specially trained family lawyer. Rather than costly letters back and forth, all discussions are carried out around the table in a more approachable way, with the goal of reaching a solution which works for both parties and the family.
In circumstances where parties require legal advice but wish to retain control themselves and avoid unnecessary acrimony, the collaborative process is the way forward. Their ...
It is a long-held misconception that a couple who have lived together for a long time are classed as ‘Common Law Spouses’. Whilst such laws operate elsewhere in the world, there is no such ruling here in England and Wales.
Many cohabitees are shocked on separation to realise how little the law assists them. Whilst it is hoped that changes are getting closer to improve our outdated and inadequate laws, it is important for all unmarried couples to be aware of potential vulnerabilities and take steps which can assist them.
Nobody plans to separate but putting in place plans to formalise your living arrangements are sensible.
A ‘Cohabitation’ or ‘Living Together Agreement’ can set out the terms in which a couple lives ...
Your Children or Mine?
When parents separate, one of the most emotional and difficult areas to resolve is the arrangements for any children.
There is never a standard solution for family arrangement- what works for one family, may not for yours and what is best for children when they are at primary school, may not be right when they are teenagers.
In our many years of experience, we have found that communication is the key. Being able to talk about the future in an open and amicable way provides a great foundation. Some families need support in order to agree arrangements and that is where we can guide you through mediation, the collaborative process or the court system.
‘If a child is over ...